Michael Carliner                              Links
Housing Economist
Census Bureau Housing and Demographic Data

A to Z Index

Construction Data (Permits, Starts, Sales, Value Put-In-Place, Prices)

Housing Data (Vacancies, Absorption, American Housing Survey)

American Community Survey  Ongoing large-sample collection of population and housing data previously included in
decennial census long form.

Current Population Survey Monthly survey (with annual demographic supplement) used to produce unemployment rates,
household estimates, homeownership, migration, etc.

Historical Decennial Census (Reports from 1790 to 2010)

IPUMS from Minnesota Population Center provides Census Bureau microdata, including the ACS,  CPS back to 1962, and
decennial censuses back to 1850!  It's easier than raw data files, but not for the faint of heart.

Demographics (other than Census Bureau)

Dept of Homeland Security Immigration Statistics Note that DHS doesn’t count people based on when they arrive, but only
when they become classified as legal immigrants, etc.

National Center for Health Statistics-Vital Statistics Births, deaths, etc. with extensive detail.  Marriage and divorce data are
there too, but since 1996 have been cut back and don’t include all states.

IRS Migration Data Address changes for taxpayers are a key input to Census population estimates.  There is additional
detail, and caveats ignored by Census, here.

Population Reference Bureau Private non-profit

House Prices

FHFA House Price Index  Repeat-sale national-state-metro quarterly (and some monthly) data based on GSE loan records

Freddie Mac House Price Index (FMHPI), Repeat-sales index using essentially same data, with slightly different
methodology, as FHFA

Case-Shiller Indices Repeat-sale, now managed by CoreLogic

National Association of Realtors Existing home median, average prices, also existing home sales (closings) and pending
home sales (contracts)

New Home Prices and Sales from Census Bureau.  Hedonic price indices (adjusted for changes in new home
characteristics) are based on the same new home sales data.

Zillow.com  Free online automated appraisals, and Home Value Index

Marshall and Swift Construction Cost Data (part of CoreLogic)

R.S. Means Construction Cost Data  (part of Gordian)

Pulsenomics conducts a survey of economists' house price expectations , based on Zillow index

Housing Finance

CoreLogic has data based on public records and servicing portfolios regarding home sales, foreclosures, mortgage
activity, prices, etc, much of which is shown in public-available reports

Freddie Mac Economic Research, including weekly mortgage rate survey,

Fannie Mae economic analyses and survey reports

FHA Data from HUD include
Single-Family Origination Trends, Monthly Production Report (including multifamily) and Loan
Performance Trends

Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation Industry Analysis

Federal Housing Finance Agency In addition to the house price indices (linked above) there are data from the
discontinued Monthly Interest Rate Survey and the nascent National Mortgage Database and measures of "underserved

Financial Accounts of the U.S. (aka Flow of Funds) data from Federal Reserve shows outstanding debt and home equity.  
Note that household ownership of rental real estate is counted under nonfinancial noncorporate business, rather than in
household real estate assets and mortgage debt.  The Federal Reserve also conducts a quarterly
Senior Loan Officers
Opinion Survey that measures whether home mortgage lending (and other lending) is being tightened or loosened.

Mortgage Bankers Association Delinquency and other surveys, commentary, etc (some free).

Mortgage Metrics report from the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency

RealtyTrac  measures of foreclosure activity

Home Mortgage Disclosure Act data are available from  the
Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council


National Association of Home Builders Economic and Housing Data, Analysis

Builder Magazine Online version of Hanley-Wood magazine for Builders.  

Professional Builder, the other major trade magazine for builders

NIST (Dept of Commerce, Nat Inst of Standards and Technology) Construction Information, including fire issues.

Manufactured Housing Institute They prefer that you don't call them mobile homes.  

Real Estate

National Association of Realtors tracks existing home sales, conducts surveys, etc.  Its Institute of Real Estate
Management conducts surveys of rental property operating costs

National Multi Housing Council looks at apartment trends and tracks largest rental property owners and managers, but
access to most material restricted to members.

Building Materials

APA – Engineered Wood Association: OSB, I-joists, etc.  (APA used to stand for American Plywood Association, until they
found that wasn’t the wave of the future.)  

CME Lumber Futures Prices.  This provides a signal of trends in lumber prices.  Futures can be used to hedge against
risk, as explained in
my 1994 article, if used prudently.

Portland Cement Association Economic Research

U.S. Forest Service, acts like wood supply is no longer of interest. Home page doesn't feature reports from Renewable
Resources Planning Act of 1974
(RPA)  or from  Forest Products Laboratory

U.S. Geological Survey – includes information on cement, aggregates, gypsum, copper, iron and steel.  

Private Non-profits, Think Tanks, Advocates

American Enterprise Institute has data, some of which is unique, with a concentration on housing finance.

Brookings Institution Housing and Finance Page.  They also have extensive information regarding demographics and

Urban Institute Housing and Housing Finance Page

Joint Center for Housing Studies Harvard University

National Low Income Housing Coalition produces various reports including periodic "Out of Reach" reports on affordability
and provides links to various state-level reports

National Housing Institute Left-of-center perspectives from New Jersey-based organization, including Shelterforce

National Council of State Housing Agencies has information from their organization and others regarding housing subsidy
programs such as tax credits and tax-exempt bonds used to finance rental and owner housing.

National Housing Preservation Database tracks public and assisted housing

Local Initiatives Support Corporation helps local non-profit developers

National Economic Data

President’s Council of Economic Advisors

Economic Indicators – Monthly Compendium prepared by Council of Economic Advisors for Joint Economic Committee

Bureau of Economic Analysis (Dept of Commerce) GDP and Other Data

BLS (Bureau of Labor Statistics) Home Page - Employment, Prices, Wages

Unemployment Insurance Claims Dept of Labor, from a different office (not from BLS)

Federal Reserve Economic Research and Data – Industrial Production, Flow of Funds, Interest Rates

State and Local Data

Building permits for states, metros, counties, and 20,000 individual permit-issuing jurisdictions (about half of which report

BLS State and County employment by industry from Quarterly “Census” of Employment and Wages, based mainly on
unemployment insurance records from state agencies.

County Business Patterns Establishments and employees by industry.  Industry classifications are probably more
consistent across states than alternative data from BLS.  Some data are available by zip code.

Library of Congress Links to state and local governments

State Data Centers connected to U.S. Census Bureau

Association for University Business and Economic Researchers  Look for links under "Member Search"

State Energy Data System from Department of Energy

National Center for Education Statistics Data on enrollment, etc.

Bureau of Transportation Statistics Includes information on transit, commuting and other household travel

See also links under prices, demographics, etc.


OECD  (Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development)

United Nations Statistics Division

CIA World Factbook

IMF International Monetary Fund - their "World Economic Outlook" is particularly notable and free

Bank for International Settlements includes various studies and data related to banking, housing finance, and housing,
property prices for some countries

Global Property Guide – Surprisingly good portal to house price data

European Mortgage Federation produces annual Hypostat report on housing and mortgage markets in Europe

Housing Europe European public, cooperative and social housing

Meta Sites

Resources for Economists (sponsored by American Economics Assn)

NBER (National Bureau of Economic Research) Links for other sources for economists

AREUEA (American Real Estate and Urban Economics Assn) Links

Data.gov  A site "to increase public access to high value, machine readable datasets generated by the Executive Branch
of the Federal Government."  Another useful site is the
Federal Digital System from the Government Printing Office, with
links to various government publication such as the Federal Register and Congressional Record


Fed In Print - Search engine maintained by FRB San Francisco monitors reports from throughout Federal Reserve system

Federal Reserve Archival System for Economic Research (FRASER) from Federal Reserve Bank of St Louis, has historical
documents and data, not limited to Fed reports.

HUDUSER Portal to all data, research, publications from HUD's Office of Policy Development and Research